This is the next installment of “Autism Rules” chronicling the shared experiences many of us may face. Hopefully you can relate to some of these “rules” illustrated by scenes from TV and movies.
When you actually have the opportunity to sleep, insomnia happens. If I wake up and let my mind wander, the rest of the night is toast. Who else is excited about the new Twin Peaks starting up next month?
Well meaning friends and family will send you articles highlighting the latest autism cause studies. These can be interesting to read, but splinter studies don’t show the big picture. On a unrelated note, can we just appreciate George Clooney from his guest stint on the Facts of Life?
Forcing someone to look at you while talking can ruin a whole conversation. This is completely true for one of my sons – as soon as someone says “look at me”, it’s over. We practice looking towards someone when talking.
Deep pressure hugs can be effective for regulating the vestibular system. I have looked like this on more than one occasion- hugging my son to avert a meltdown.
Licking things to process them is normal. Smelling and licking objects is also a common sight in my house.
You may bring food for your child to any family or school event. Food aversions or special diets make this a necessary practice for navigating public outings. Chicken nuggets are not created equally despite what friends and family members might say to the contrary.
Just when you think your child is finally over Barney after 5 years, they ask for it again. Substitute Barney with Yo Gabba Gabba, Planet Heroes (my house) or any “recycled” interest (your house). I can never throw anything away because I don’t know if it will be the “next” coveted item!
Your child will fall asleep at the worse possible time. Especially if they have been awake for a large part of the night.
Extreme reactions may occur when others focus on the disability instead of the ability. I focus on abilities in my house because I know that my kids are capable of doing more than anyone might think possible.
Parents are always ready to run. Safety and situational awareness is a never-ending saga.
You might have looked like this after opening your door to find the home-visit therapist there for the appointment you totally forgot about. I’m not going to lie, this was me on more than one occasion during my 8 year span of early intervention services for my 4 kids. I apologize again in the event any of those therapists might be reading this post.
Sensory processing differences can cause one person to seek out certain textures while another avoids them. For more information regarding sensory seeking and sensory avoiding, this article has some good information in it. Sensory
It’s usually not a good idea to offer unsolicited parenting advice. This really applies to all parents.
You may not hesitate to loudly celebrate what others might consider a minor victory. I recently looked like this when one of my 13 year olds finally learned to tie his shoe. I will look like this again when my other 13 year old also learns to tie his shoe.
If you would like to see the first 45 “rules”, they can be found